Immediately following the Oct. 15 Occupy Indianapolis rally at
Veteran's Memorial Plaza, a band of demonstrators marched to the State Capitol
Building to begin an indefinite "occupation" below the south steps.
They have now been there for one full week.
Because Indiana law prohibits camping on the State House
grounds, the "occupation"is happening in shifts. Many supporters work double and triple shifts,
going for days with little or no sleep. By mid week, what began as a spirited
civil demonstration turned gradually into a demonstration of endurance.
A donated portable generator allows laptops to remain
charged; it runs the sound system, coffee pots, hot plates and even a
microwave. Donuts, take-out chicken and other food items have been regularly
supplied by a variety of supporters. On Wednesday evening 25 pizzas were
donated by the national organization Crooks and Liars.
A major accomplishment on Tuesday morning was establishing a
live internet stream. Monitoring the stream has become a priority for the
group, allowing them to remain in continuous visual contact with other groups
and supporters across the country.
By Thursday, other responsibilities and less-than-ideal
weather conditions caused the attendance to dwindle. The evening 7 o'clock
meetings of the General Assembly continue to draw groups of 30 or more, but
during overnight and daytime hours, the number of occupiers drops drastically.
Without exception, anyone asked said they were there for the
duration, although when pressed no one knew how long that may be. Plans are
already in place to bring in cold-weather supplies. One spokesman said that if
necessary, he plans to watch the Super Bowl this February from the outdoor
Early Saturday morning, the Occupy Indianapolis base moved
from the Capitol south steps to now surround the Thomas Hendricks statue on the
southeast corner of the Capitol grounds. Free of weekday obligations and helped
by comfortable weather, Saturday brought a crowd of nearly 100 supporters to
the downtown site.
Occupy Indianapolis is an extension and support group of the
ongoing Occupy Wall Street protests. The New York-based group now has
satellite support from an estimated 950 cities across the world.
For further information on the Indianapolis group, or to